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This post was published to Critical Blackness at 6:19:38 AM 3/12/2014

The FL-13th a perfect storm of messaging, demographic, and money – though according to the Huffington Post it appears outside R groups closed much of the spending advantage on TV – seems to have come down to the two percent advantage of Rs over Ds in the registered voter pool.

This was long considered a test case for the President’s ObamaCare messaging, and a bellwether for what Ds can expect going forward in 2014. The GOP ran a guy who hated ObamaCare, in a district that had 25% of its population over 65. It should have been a win for Ds. Close, but a win for Ds.

The next week or so is going to be essential in the understanding of the rest of 2014. The post mortem on what worked and what did not, how the population reacted and moved is going to be telling. For example, how did minority turn out go. Did blacks and Hispanics vote? Did young people. What about single women. These core constituencies win swing election districts. Tampa area populations are fascinating test cases, and while they are more conservative than other urban areas where people are going to vote this year, Sink had the money, org, and name recognition to win this thing. That she didn’t is troubling.

If Ds turned out and still lost, 2014 is going to go badly. If Ds did not turnout, if participation was lower than expected or even just traditionally low – as mid-terms are want to be – then Ds have a formula to combat the loss.
It is also interesting that the third party Libertarian candidate didn’t affect the race at all. This was really a big deal race. If Ds are ever going to win the House, or even make inroads in the House, and by ever I mean before and during redistricting in 2020, we have to be able to pick groundballs like this one.

In related and interesting news, the GOP once again touted a confused and rather pathetic woman complaining about ObamaCare and how it was going to destroy her life. In reality, she will save 500 a month in premiums, and about 7500.00 in yearly expenses. This according to Chris Hayes and a conversation held last night on All In, with Jonathan Cohen from The New Republic.

Cohen correctly asked – if every GOP story about ObamaCare collapses under even the most basic fact check or push back… maybe ObamaCare isn’t actually a disaster. He said it with a wry twist, but it is something that I have long maintained.
The GOP isn’t even pretending to tell the truth about ObamaCare and the results are part of the reason Sink lost in the 13th. When questioned and shown the information that Ocare would save her money, allow her to keep her doctor, and generally make her life better, the woman’s quote is, “Impossible… I simply do not believe it.” Again, that is from All In.

The resistance to facts, and to demonstrable, objective, reality allows for the kind of result we saw last night in Florida. The GOP lie machine is playing into the fears of people and until ObamaCare fully implements later this month and over the next 9 months or so, the GOP seems to be winning the conversation.

What we can do is tell the truth, advocate for our position, send money – though Sink had plenty – and get out and vote. 2014 is a moving target. The election isn’t today, and the more time we have to demonstrate ObamaCare’s success and GOP mendacity, the better we’ll do. However, Ds need to “Wake the F Up.”

Peace,
J. Christian Watts
Follow me on Twitter @JCWPolitics
Read me on Critical Blackness Blog

Originally posted to JCWPolitics on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 03:28 AM PDT.

Also republished by DKos Florida.

Poll

Does the close loss in FL-13 mean Dems are DOA or that Ds have a chance?

41%26 votes
30%19 votes
27%17 votes

| 62 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (6+ / 0-)

    J, Christian Watts Follow me on Twitter @JCWPolitics

    by JCWPolitics on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 03:28:56 AM PDT

  •  Alex Sink is a horrible candidate (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    temptxan, corvo, buffie, appledown

    A horrible candidate running another horrible campaign equals this predicted loss.  Democrats seem to have a knack of doing this and they "Sunk" (pun intended) a boatload of money into someone who is a proven loser.

    Democrats need to build a base of dependable voters - and they have alienated the most dependable base of voters in those over 65 and approaching that age.  The support for illegal immigration and illegal trade deals - both of which Seniors view as a race to the bottom - hurts Democrat chances.  

    •  to say nothing of Our President's (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Victor Ward

      repeated attempts to whack away at Social Security benefits.

      Dogs from the street can have all the desirable qualities that one could want from pet dogs. Most adopted stray dogs are usually humble and exceptionally faithful to their owners as if they are grateful for this kindness. -- H.M. Bhumibol Adulyadej

      by corvo on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 06:04:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The fact is that we voted for Obama (0+ / 0-)

        thinking he'd be mostly on our side. Turns out, he's a plutocrat who feeds us some candy now and then as he and the Democrats enact policies that make the rich richer. We want universal health care, they give us universal health insurance instead.

        Yes, he's better on women's rights.
        Yes, he's practically (finally) a hero president on gay rights.
        Yes, he eventually, sort of, ended the war in Iraq.

        Unfortunately, he's trying to sneak the Trans Pacific Partnership through Congress, which will most certainly 1) Destroy what's left of our middle class, 2) Decimate any chance we have for saving the environment, and 3) Prevent us from reining in the super rich's chokehold on our government.

        Here we are debating how we can support our elected Democrats instead of figuring out how best to CONTROL our elected officials.

  •  We also have to (7+ / 0-)

    STOP running away from Obama.  This ludicrous move to pretend like Obama us not President is disturbing.  WE ARE NOT going to move Obama contitiencies to the polls without OBAMA.  It offends the very people we need to turnout.  Uugghhh frustrating.

    •  I agree and it's time the Dems stop offending the (0+ / 0-)

      voters and playing into GOP hands with this foolishness. We need to be strong and embrace our views.

      "No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar." Abraham Lincoln

      by appledown on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:06:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Preach (0+ / 0-)

      If you look at what happened in 2010, the candidates that embraced Obama, mostly out west, all won. The candidates that ignored, or "distanced" themselves from him all lost. Sometimes it is more complicated than that, but take VA for example. The current Gov embraced Obama and won, the last D to run told O he didn't need any help. He got crushed. Great point. Thanks for the comment!

      J

      J, Christian Watts Follow me on Twitter @JCWPolitics

      by JCWPolitics on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:32:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  We lost because only 39.8% showed up. Sink (7+ / 0-)

    had the edge going in. We lost by less than 4,000 votes.

    Somehow, we have to get it into the heads of Democrats, that if we don't vote this year, we're fucked for the next two years with billions in tax dollars being wasted on more Obamacare repeals (I mean --is there no fucking limit to repeals?), government shutdowns, and government obstruction. Sore loser? Damn right. Because we could have, and should have, taken this one.

    "In this world, hate has never yet dispelled hate. Only love can dispel hate." ~ Buddha

    by Leslie Salzillo on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 04:01:27 AM PDT

    •  We have to get turnout UP (0+ / 0-)

      Here is the problem with our turnout machine. Rs win low turn out elections -- generally. Because of that they attempt to lower turnout in every election. They do it in a couple of ways, Voter ID, ending early voting, long lines in minority communities, etc. But another main way they do it is confusion. They lie, and when we call them on it out of frustration they lie some more. What happens then is that people end up saying, "f it." and stay home. It is counter intuitive but we have to stop fighting Rs and instead explain to people how our policies help them day to day. Hopey Changey works. We win when we expand the electorate. We have to do that this year.

      J

      J, Christian Watts Follow me on Twitter @JCWPolitics

      by JCWPolitics on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:37:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sink had zero appeal to workers or real Dems (7+ / 0-)

    I live in FL-13 and voted for Sink. That said, among my group of friends Sink was pretty much despised for how she handled the gubernatorial election.

    This was a VERY winnable election with a more populist candidate.

    Instead the Democratic Party forced Alex Sink on us, and between her being a blue dog, being a former banker, and immediately associating immigration reform with the need for maids and landscapers she basically chased away a significant portion of the people that would normally turn out to vote for the Democratic candidate.

    This was our election to lose, and the party picked the perfect candidate to lose it for us. Pinellas county is more than just rich old white people.

    •  The bad news, the good news (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JCWPolitics

      Bad News: We lost and we should have won.

      Good News: We lost by less than 2% in a Republican leading district (Republicans outnumber Democrats in voter registration) and it was close.

      We need to change the framework of the ACA: That is happening as we speak as approval of the ACA went up 4-5 points in the latest poll
      Obama's approval rating is starting to inch up as well. We cannot run from the ACA. As Chris Hayes said, "We own it" There are other issues that we need to address as well; but that requires another thread.

      a long habit of not thinking a thing WRONG, gives it a superficial appearance of being RIGHT, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom.

      by Jamesleo on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:42:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  everybody (0+ / 0-)

        wants to make this about the ACA, but the way I see it is that the voters that think the ACA is controversial are the people that would never ever vote for a Democrat anyway.

        I think we should focus on motivating the people that wouldn't normally vote at all; there are lots of them out there, and nobody is going after their votes.

        •  Yes that is true (0+ / 0-)

          But what motivates them?

          a long habit of not thinking a thing WRONG, gives it a superficial appearance of being RIGHT, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom.

          by Jamesleo on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 09:33:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I think O is trying (0+ / 0-)

          I think O is trying by talking about Poverty and Opportunity so much. I think he is attempting to reignite the Hope/Change dynamic. If he can we can still do very well in 2014. Nunn is up in GA -- i don't believe she has trailed yet -- and Grimes is up in KY. Those are two red state pick ups that the GOP isn't counting on.

          J

          J, Christian Watts Follow me on Twitter @JCWPolitics

          by JCWPolitics on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:44:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Here is my worry (0+ / 0-)

        The district leans R but only by about 2 points. The margin of victory is consistent with the percentages in the district. Unless, of course, the indys are all closet Rs. If that is the case -- and it actually might be -- than we almost closed a serious gap in a red district. That would make me feel better but I need more info.

        J

        J, Christian Watts Follow me on Twitter @JCWPolitics

        by JCWPolitics on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:42:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  If you take the Libeterian out of the race (0+ / 0-)

          Its a 4 point win. Again with all of the issues on their side, this is the what they get. There is weakness in the GOP as well

          a long habit of not thinking a thing WRONG, gives it a superficial appearance of being RIGHT, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom.

          by Jamesleo on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:58:53 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  There needs to be an autopsy of her campaign (0+ / 0-)

      and the advisers who handled her also need to be run out of business.
      If the campaign was "crafted" by national dems, they need to be held accountable.
      It's really time to start getting into the machine works of the Dem party and figuring out what is wrong with it. There's too much of this stuff.

      You can't make this stuff up.

      by David54 on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 06:06:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        David54

        but considering how the Democratic Party establishment in Florida STILL put all their eggs in her basket after she completely botched the 2010 gubernatorial  election doesn't make me hopeful. We will probably have Sink forced on us again, maybe for the next open Senate seat.

      •  I'm not sure who was running her campaign (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        David54

        Part of what happens in races like this is the DNC parachutes a national team in. Often, when you have a special election with this much lead time and this much money you get people from all over the country putting their 2 cents in. It can have disastrous results. However, I've also seen it work in odd places. We have to examine what went wrong over the next week or so and then we have to take steps to correct it. I honestly thought we had them here.

        J

        J, Christian Watts Follow me on Twitter @JCWPolitics

        by JCWPolitics on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:48:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Ouch. Wow. (0+ / 0-)

      That is awful. Let me ask you this, is Crist going to do better? Are we making a mistake backing his play?

      J

      J, Christian Watts Follow me on Twitter @JCWPolitics

      by JCWPolitics on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:39:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I always know when something isn't good (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    corvo, David54, Victor Ward

    it gets eerily silent around here.....I'm sure one of the FP'rs will write a nice piece on Sarah Palin or Dubya to relish the good 'ol days.

    That said this is too bad and a bad loss for Democrats - Sink should have won.

    The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

    by ctexrep on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:38:35 AM PDT

  •  Why vote republican lite when you can get the real (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    corvo, buffie

    thing? A lesson the Dems have yet to learn.

    "A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves." Edward R. Murrow

    by temptxan on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:44:40 AM PDT

    •  or, more scarily, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      temptxan

      maybe they have.  Once again: Washington Generals.

      Dogs from the street can have all the desirable qualities that one could want from pet dogs. Most adopted stray dogs are usually humble and exceptionally faithful to their owners as if they are grateful for this kindness. -- H.M. Bhumibol Adulyadej

      by corvo on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 06:06:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This Hysteria is Totally Confusing (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JCWPolitics, Apost8

    This narrative that the Democrats should have won this election and that this loss is a horrible shock is utterly confusing.  This district has been solidly in Republican hands since 1983 and went twice for George W. Bush by around 10% in 2000 and 2004 and John McCain by 4% in 2008.  Obama barely eked out a 1% win in 2012 by pulling out all the stops.  How do we come away with this election was the Democrats to lose.  Let's get a grip here.  Seems to me that the media, as usual, is trying to build a cliffhanging narrative to increase circulation.

    •  The numbers worked for us (0+ / 0-)

      This is a race we had a real chance to win. It was an R district in an R part of the state but we had a real shot, and a ton of money.  Ds are trying to take back the house. In order to do that we need to narrow the gap in this cycle. Rs have a 17 seat cushion in the House and we have to get that into single digits. If we can 2016 is a year where we could actually win the House back. Also, if things break this cycle we could grab those 17 seats. But for that to happen we have to play flawlessly and this was a real shot at a win.

      J, Christian Watts Follow me on Twitter @JCWPolitics

      by JCWPolitics on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:52:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Thank you. nt (0+ / 0-)

      "Give to every other human being every right that you claim for yourself." - Robert G. Ingersoll

      by Apost8 on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 11:11:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Re posted to DKos Florida T & R. (0+ / 0-)

    "No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar." Abraham Lincoln

    by appledown on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:08:56 AM PDT

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